Bangladesh Academy for Rural Development
According to the BARD Ordinance 1986, the functions of the Academy are to
The Academy has three types of activities viz. training, research and action research. These are as follows:
The Academy is a designated national training institute. Its training clientele includes both officials and non-officials. Officials comprise civil servants, officers of nation building departments and international participants of development sector organisations while the non-officials are local councilors, local leaders, members of co-operatives. students of educational institutions and members of voluntary organizations. Besides, a large number of imitational clientele including students, scholars, consultants, government officials, members of diplomatic corps and imitational agencies visit the Academy.
A unified approach of research, training and experimentation to solve the problems of rural development has given special significance to the role of the Academy as a training institution. Because of this specialty BARD continues to attract trainees from different government agencies, local level organizations and non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as trainees, observers and visitors from abroad. During the period from 1959 to December 2014 a total of 2,44,803 trainees and visitors attended various programmes conducted by the Academy.
BARD has accumulated vast experience in the field of training. Every year BARD organizes 120 training courses on an average. It has also developed 30 training modules under the broad category of rural development. Various groups of national and international clientele have already participated in training courses on these modules. These courses are offered on request with a reasonable budget. Requests for organizing training courses are to be made to Director General/Director (Training), BARD, Kotbari, Comilla-3503, Bangladesh.
The Academy has been conducting socio-economic research since its inception. Research findings are used as both training materials by the Academy itself and information materials by the Ministries, Planning Commission and policy makers for drawing up development programs. In some particular cases, these are also circulated among the international agencies and institutions. The total number of completed researches till June 2013 is 639.
Over time the Academy has also expanded international contact and undertaken collaborative research with various development organizations. During last 54 years Michigan State University, Harvard University, Gottingen University, Bath University, Upsala University, Kyoto University, Population Council, ICOMP, APDC, FAO, UNDP, UNESCO, IDRC, JICA and CIRDAP have become the major international research collaborators. BARD is very closely linked with the Center for Integrated Rural Development for Asia and the Pacific (CIRDAP) and acts as its National IRD Centre for Bangladesh. It is also working as the National Liaison Center for SAARC in the field of rural development.
The BARD faculty has a wide range of experience in the field of research, training and action research. In addition to self-sponsored studies, every year BARD conducts a commendable number of researches sponsored by GOs, NGOs and international agencies. The Academy with a multi-disciplinary faculty has gained the capacity to conduct multi-dimensional studies on rural development and welcomes requests to conduct studies from any agency - national or international. Requests for conducting studies are to be made to Director General, BARD/Director (Research), Kotbari, Comilla-3503, Bangladesh. Research Publications are available at the Publication Section of BARD.
BARD conducts experimental projects to evolve models of improved institutions, administrative structures, coordination and methods of production. The project activities usually involve the villagers, development institutions, local councils and government officials. So far the Academy has conducted about 50 experimental projects on various aspects of rural development. Through these pilot experimentations, it has been able to evolve the following rural development models that have already been replicated throughout country as components of the Comilla Model:
Besides, government has been replicating two recent models of BARD which are: Comprehensive Village Development Programme (CVDP) and Ecological Sanitation while another recent model has been replicated as Small Farmers Development Foundation (SFDF).